Andrew’s right – Twitter in particular and social media in general are such overwhelming and customizable experiences that it’s really bewildering when you first try to get involved and leverage it for business goals. One of the things I really enjoy about working with authors, (aside from the fact that you can count on them to do some of the writing for you – because let’s face it, public relations is about writing compelling copy in exactly the right way – and then tweaking it and repurposing it and coming up with yet another catchy angle that will help you reach another segment of your target audience) – where was I? Oh yes – while authors (not the ones I work with!) may sometimes be a bit off in the EQ department, they’re rarely slouches when it comes to IQ.
This means that if they’ll listen, they learn. Before you know it, they’re teaching you things. I’ve learned a lot about how to behave on Twitter from Stuart Clark, and I used him as a shining example when I was working with Andrew on his initial Twitter training, namely:
- Thank people for retweets (RTs) and for follow Friday (#ff) recommendations.
- Always check your @messages. Engage with the people who are seeking to engage with you. Always be gracious. Don’t get involved in gossipy and churlish pissing matches.
- Let people on Twitter get a little glimpse of who you are as a person, not just an author flogging a book – let your passions show a little bit.
So I’m delighted to pass on a couple of great posts that Andrew found and tweeted re authors and social media.
The first is Holly Robinson’s Huffington Post article on a writer’s first year with social media.
As for Stuart? Well – as he’s about to make the transition from non-fiction to fiction author with the first of his three novels about astronomy and science giants, he too is reading and sharing more information about not just astronomy and cosmology, but is also beginning to engage with fiction readers, by sharing this review of Juli Zeh’s novel about two competitive physicists, Dark Matter.
The best thing about working with writers? Establishing goals that support marketing objectives is a dawdle. It’s not about building brand awareness or shifting public opinion. It’s about selling books. And by selling I mean sharing. Because readers are passionate people with an insatiable desire for their next fix. And it had better be quality stuff. Writers are the folks who supply that demand, either through content creation or content sharing. I’m so glad they exist. I’m even more glad I get to work with some of them.